The Making of an Authentic Neapolitan Pizza Margherita

There is one thing you should know before this whole pizza extravaganza begins: there is no such thing as gourmet pizza! Truffle oil, pesto and figs? The people of Naples, Italy are definitely not OK with this.

Pizza was born as a food for the poor, and once upon a time in the 19th century, the King of Italy and his wife, Queen Margherita di Savoia visited Naples for a holiday. Legend has it that the queen got bored of French gourmet food which was generally served to the royals at that time. She summoned the most famous pizzaioli (pizza-maker) in Naples, Raffaele Esposito, and had him bake her three pizzas in the palace kitchen. She did not like the one with garlic (pizza marinara) or anchovies (pizza Napoli), but she loved the pizza with tomato sauce, mozzarella and a sprig of basil. Esposito dedicated his invention to the queen immediately named it after her, and that’s how ”Pizza Margherita”  was born. There, that’s your fun fact of the day.

So it was pretty cool when Brandi Pizzeria opened in Dubai Mall, bringing with them their fine, hot Italian men to knead, roll and toss their fine, hot and absolutely delicious pizza. And it’s even cooler when the owners invited me for a class to learn the art of making authentic Pizza Margherita plus giving away their secret recipe!

Shall we begin?

Actually first, make sure you tie your hair back and put on an apron or your husband’s old t-shirt. It’s going to get messy. Oh and of course, you have to read the instructions with your best Italian accent… it’s more fun I promise!

the making of pizza

 Mix the flour, salt and yeast. Pour in the water and mix until it’s a sticky mess. Now knead the dough for 10 minutes or until your hands fall off… whichever comes first. It will look a little lumpy but once you let it rest it will be smooth and elastic.

pizza dough


 Roll out the dough in a circle with your hands – don’t use a rolling pin. and try to get the edges thin so it’s not too doughy. Top your pizza with tomato sauce, fresh mozzarella and a few fresh basil leaves.

pizza before baking

Wait! We gotta Instagram our creation first…

instagram pizza

Bake your pizza in a super hot even (the highest temperature it can go) for 10 minutes. It cooks so fast so keep an eye on it. And here it is, the simplest and most delicious pizza of all time!

Neapolitan-style pizza

 As to how to eat a Neapolitan pizza, there is tradition to adhere to as well. First, pizza is not meant to be shared. You order and eat your own individual pizza because they are dinner plate size and very thin. Fold the pizza into a libretto, a little book, take a huge bite!

Brandi pizza


Pizza Margherita

instagram pizza

By Reem Published: August 28, 2013

    This is the queen of all pizzas and the secret to a great pizza Margherita is to use the best ingredients you can find.


    • 3 cups all-purpose-flour plus more for dusting
    • 1 teaspoon active-dry-yeast
    • 1 teaspoon salt
    • 1 cup water room temperature
    • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin-olive-oil
    • 1 cup marinara-sauce make your own or buy from supermarket
    • 4 ounces fresh-mozzarella thinly sliced
    • 6 fresh-basil-leaves


    1. Put the flour on a counter and make a well. Add the salt and yeast, then gradually pour in the water little by little and mix with your hands. Keep kneading the dough until it's not very sticky and form into a rough ball.
    2. Turn the dough out onto a clean work surface dusted with flour. Knead until the dough is smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes, using more flour if necessary to keep from sticking.
    3. Divide the dough in half, brush it with the olive oil and place it on a lightly oiled baking sheet. Cover with plastic wrap, and set aside to rise at room temperature until doubled, about 45 minutes or place in the fridge overnight.
    4. When you want to bake your pizza, pre-heat the oven to the highest temperature it can go (400 degrees F). Generously dust your work surface with flour and place one ball of dough. Make a disk shape by pressing dough with the heel of your hands, rotating the dough between presses. Continue to press and stretch dough into a circle.
    5. Spread the sauce on the pizza in a thin, even layer, making sure to leave a 1/4-inch border around the edges of the pizza. Top with the mozzarella and basil leaves.
    6. Slide the pizza on a non-edge pan or pizza baking stone and bake for 10 minutes or until the cheese starts bubbling and the crust is brown. Slice and enjoy!!


    1. noreen - the vanilla bean dream says:

      i always prefer simple pizzas. Nothing like it! This looks fantastic

    Leave a Comment